The Crazy Business We Call Show
A recent addition to the city's nightlife is Martuni's, located at Valencia and Market streets. One recent weekend night found the place awash with buckets of champagne and birthday celebrants — including one Randi Merzon, a charter member of the vaunted, if obnoxious, Ethel Merman Memorial Choir.
After a couple of turns at the piano bar, EMMC director Jo-Carol excitedly reported that she had just met Gentry Johnson, who once drew a cartoon strip called Dangerous Creatures for the San Francisco Sentinel. One of Johnson's panels, years ago, was about a fictional choral group called the “Merman Tabernacle Choir.” Jo-Carol mused about using his idea, changing the EMMC's entire act, the name, the concept itself! The mind reeled as the din grew louder.
Amid the usual fabulous tunes from Le Miz and other extravaganzas, a toothless little man named Popeye seemed to be slaying the crowd, a drunken Mr. Magoo with arms spread wide, belting out the standards for the sheer joy of it. But aside from one slightly beat-up number who brought her own sheet music for the pianist, the drag queen attendance was sadly lacking. Something in the air said this place should have been the Heathrow of High Heels. Where was the goddamn glamour?
A few of us stepped outside for a smoke, lamenting this very dilemma. As if on cue, a white limo suddenly materialized at the curb, its stretched fuselage extending into the fog like something out of a '40s film premiere. After a delicious pause, the rear door opened, and a single woman's shoe descended to the pavement — a size 11 that stopped Valencia in its tracks! The rest of the body emerged, a handsome 6-foot apparition in full gown and wig, and another after her, and another, and another, all wobbling slightly from drink, yet recovering sufficiently to stride into the club, powdered chins held high. The elite Republican Guard had arrived.
Go back to your homes, S.F. All is well.
Beyond Danielle Steel
The latest issue of the zine Chip's Closet Cleaner contains an exuberant overview of the finest heretofore undiscovered literary subgenre — librarian porn — compiled by Bay Area zine legend Candi Strecker. Longtime publisher of the excellent It's a Wonderful Lifestyle and Sidney Suppey's Confused Pet Monthly (“Adding insult to imagery — since 1979”), Strecker was once a corporate librarian for a Chicago plastic-and-chemical company. A friend passed along her first librarian porn paperback way back in 1980, and she has been collecting from the bizarre niche ever since.
For instance, The Librarian Loves to Lick includes a zesty photocopier scene with a professor, after which, at the end of the young librarian's shift, “she took the library stamp and stamped her book several times — once for each climax she had had during the evening.”
In Bang the Librarian Hard, the young librarian Samantha visits the coach's office. Suddenly: “Coach Able pressed a button, and as if by magic, a queen-sized bed covered with turquoise silk sheets appeared from behind a wall.” In The Lusty Librarian, Lynn gangbangs the members of a hotel mariachi band. In The Librarian's Hot Urges, Pam sleeps with the principal. In Eager-to-Spread Librarian, Crystal does it with several juvenile delinquents.
And you thought they were all schoolmarms.
“There are two basic plot lines in all these books,” says Strecker. “One, gal librarian is a nympho who manages to have lots of sex despite the restrictions of her job. Two, repressed gal librarian discovers sex, then becomes a nympho who manages to have lots of sex despite the restrictions of her job. Also, many of these books revolve around the 'mature' (in her 20s) librarian-bimbo having sex with teen-age boys, in a college or high-school library setting.”
Her Closet Cleaner article “Sex in the Stacks” fleshes out a further explanation: “Part of the arousal factor seems to be based on the paradox that a woman might be brainy and slutty. … Exploring the urges of the body in the temple of the mind may be a sacrilege but it's also a giggly dare.”
If you can't find it at Tower, Chip's Closet Cleaner is a mere two bucks from Chip Rowe, PO Box 11967, Chicago, IL 60611-0967.
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By Jack Boulware